iZombie S01E12 Review: Dead Rat, Live Rat, Brown Rat, White Rat


crosstheroadThe penultimate Season 1 episode of iZombie—“Dead Rat, Live Rat, Brown Rat, White Rat”—was directed by Mairzee Almas and written by show Co-executive Producer Diane Ruggiero-Wright. A rogue zombie of Liv’s own creation is causing some sloppy carnage, Blaine is on the warpath in pursuit of his purloined astronaut brains, and pretty much everyone gets themselves into some serious hot water. Continue reading

iZombie S01E11 Review: Astroburger


CuckoosNestThe 11th episode of iZombie, “Astroburger,” was so funny—and so frustrating. Liv talks to Cheezy-Puff demons and imaginary people, and Ravi gets one small step closer to a cure while Blaine makes a giant leap for zombiekind in the form of astronaut salad. Written by Kit Boss and directed by Michael Fields, “Astroburger” sends us hurtling toward the season finale with revelations both real and imagined. Continue reading

iZombie S01E10 Review: Mr. Berserk


Babs & LivAs the first season of iZombie heads toward its conclusion, the show continues on its path of being less a simple procedural drama and more a zombie apocalypse saga, as we learn more about the possible evil facilitators of the Seattle zombie outbreak—and the possibility of zombie events in other parts of the country as well. In Episode 10, “Mr. Berserk,” written by Dierdre Mangan & Graham Norris and directed by Jason Bloom, Liv (Rose McIver) must deal with the aftermath of her boyfriend’s murder by Blaine (David Anders) while experiencing the brain of an alcoholic investigative reporter. Ravi gets a few steps closer to finally telling Major (Robert Buckley) the truth about Seattle’s zombie infestation, and the Seattle PD brass falls under further suspicion by those in the know about Team Z. Continue reading

iZombie S01E09 Review: Patriot Brains


28 milliseconds laterIn Episode 9 of iZombie, “Patriot Brains,” Liv takes on sniper skills along with a case of PTSD, Ravi stays un-undead, and we ostensibly learn how to kill a zombie … and how not to. Written by Robert Forman and directed by Guy Bee, this installment takes us to some pretty dark places.

For those viewers wondering where all the existential horror of being brain-eaters has been for the zombies on this show—well, here it finally is. Last week’s show ended with Liv experiencing the terrifying last living moments of poor young Jerome. And as if that weren’t bad enough, she got her sample of Jerome’s cerebellum from her boyfriend Lowell, whereby she learns that he’s getting his meals from Blaine’s murderous meat market. She’s horrified and furious, but it’s Lowell who really takes on the full brunt of what he’s done (and who he’s eaten) when he admits to himself that he just didn’t want to know the truth about where his meals were coming from. Lowell is contrite, lovelorn, filled with self-loathing—and not long for this earth. Continue reading

iZombie S01E08 Review: Dead Air


Another great episode of iZombie has the show reminding us of Veronica Mars more than ever—and that’s a good thing. “Dead Air,” written by Aiyana White and directed by Zetna Fuentes, is full of sex, pop culture references, and humor, and ends with a juicy cliffhanger.

As implied in the previous episode, Major has been beaten up again, this time while in jail for breaking into Julien “Candyman” Dupont’s car. Ravi (Rahul Kohli) and Peyton (Aly Michalka) meet for the first time while waiting for Major’s release, and Ravi believes he and Peyton shared a “moment.” Looks like the two of them are gonna go on a date—no thanks to Liv (Rose McIver), who spends the episode giving everyone unwanted psychological advice. She’s tasted the brain of a murdered radio sex-advice-show host who can’t keep her opinions on people’s mental states and motivations to herself, and she seriously gets on everyone’s nerves—especially Ravi’s. Continue reading

iZombie S01E07 Review: Maternity Liv


HandsomeMajorLillywhiteIt looks as if iZombie has been renewed by the CW for a second season. Good news for viewers—the show grows more interesting every week.

We continue to see Major striking out on his own in his attempt to find the lost kids. He follows the “Candyman” (ex-drug dealer, now zombie lackey, Julien dupont) to a tanning salon, and breaks into his car, where he finds (along with hair dye and hot sauce) a Tupperware container of brains. This is a big turning point in the story, as Major has stepped onto the real trail of what’s happening in zombie-infested Seattle. Sadly, the episode concludes with Major in jail for the car break-in, and with some tough guys put in the cell with him specifically as punishment by the police. They are irritated that Major, having gotten no help with the missing kid situation from the law, has now joined with a reporter, who with Major’s help gets Babineaux on tape saying that the police are likely to keep dragging their feet. Continue reading

iZombie S01E06 Review: Virtual Reality Bites

We were alarmed to see Major on the slab at the morgue. I guess we have grown attached to his character.

We were alarmed to see Major on the slab at the morgue. I guess we have grown attached to his character.

In “Virtual Reality Bites,” Episode 6 of iZombie, Liv picks up some hacker proficiency and sort of gets to go on a date. Babineaux is unwittingly almost murdered by Blaine’s brain chef, and Major collects more clues to the disappearance of two shelter kids. Oh, and Ravi gets to flex his gamer skillz in pursuit of a killer.

The show is beginning to hit its stride as the disparate storylines have all started to come together. Blaine is established as a very bad zombie with a thriving brain business and a host of minions. Major has now taken on a role beyond Liv’s handsome ex-fiancé, devoting himself to finding the kids that have gone missing from Helton Shelter. And Babineaux is settling into a routine of using Liv as his de facto partner—maybe the recent revelation that zombieism has permeated the upper ranks of the Seattle Police Department provides a clue as to why no one seems to care that Clive doesn’t have a partner and that a pasty-faced young assistant medical examiner is usually present during his interrogations.

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iZombie S01E05 Review: Flight of the Living Dead

bloody marias

Lowell’s extra spicy bloody Marias

In Episode 5 of iZombie, “Flight of the Living Dead,” things really start moving—an experienced skydiver is impaled on a tree branch, Liv meets a young gentleman zombie with a sexy accent, and Major takes the search for his missing wards into his own hands when the police are suspiciously unhelpful.

Almost all of the characters’ stakes change this week, as the case-of-the-week becomes personal. Holly White was an adventurous, wild spirit who was once a sorority sister of Liv and Peyton’s at Theta Mu—that is, until they both voted to kick her out. Apparently she … played loud music at night? (We can only imagine how insufferable pre-med Liv, her pre-law pal Peyton and their like-minded sorority sisters must have been.) The descriptions of Liv’s undergrad self, along with her rhapsody on memories of a good egg salad sandwich (leading to Ravi’s perfect bored response: “#YOLO”), serve as counterpoints to the changes affected when she eats some of her dead old friend Holly’s brains and becomes adventurous. Continue reading

iZombie S01E04 Review: Live and Let Clive

Chile, kale and brain breakfast smoothie—what have we become?

Blaine’s chile, kale and brain breakfast smoothie

Although this week’s iZombie episode, “Live and Let Clive,” was still heavy on the one-off police drama, we got to know Det. Clive Babineaux a little better, and see just what else Blaine has been up to lately.

The story involves the murder of a gang member (Liv’s brain-of-the-week), and we learn that there is a supply chain from Hong Kong to Seattle of utopium. Liv suspects from her visions that Clive is a dirty cop, and although as viewers we don’t really buy it, it works in combination with Liv’s brain-transferred paranoia. One fun aspect of the cop/gang story is that we get to see Ravi out on the case, looking for clues with Liv. Ravi also ends up moving in with Major at the encouragement of Liv, who feels that Major’s new girlfriend is moving in on her abandoned territory. We wonder how long Ravi can share a home with someone without spilling the beans about Liv’s condition—we are guessing not that long. Continue reading

iZombie S01E03 Review: The Exterminator


marcyIn Episode 3 of iZombie, “The Exterminator,” a third zombie is discovered, Liv eats some bad brains, and a familiar-looking young tech billionaire is suspected of murder.

Liv had a pretty good time when eating a lusty murdered artist’s brains last week in Episode 2, “Brother, Can You Spare a Brain,” so the batch she tastes today is quite a counterpoint. Although the cadaver came into the morgue as a hit-and-run victim, it turns out he was a sociopathic hit man, and was himself murdered. (There are murders all over the place in this episode.) Instead of taking on emotional traits and feelings, she finds herself with a head full of trivia and a decided lack of empathy—but as with the artist’s brain, there is still a draw to try to extend the experience. The hard lack of emotional connection to other people comes as a relief in some ways. Liv’s zombie resting state must be more of a dull despair than an absence of feeling.

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